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The Puffin (Puifín) 44p

PuffinThe puffin also called "sea parrot" is an odd looking bird that lives in the Arctic waters of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.

It has a thick body a large head and a high fattened multi-coloured bill that most people notice. Its legs are orange in colour. The tufted puffin is dark underneath with a while streaked plume on the side of the head. Puffins feed chiefly on fish. Outside of the breeding season it can be found in the open sea.

They are experts swimmers and divers and come to land mainly in June and July during the breeding season. Because of their shape and size they find it very hard to take off in the water. They are very funny to watch. Puffins make their nests in large colonies on rocks coasts and islands.

The one egg is incubated for 40-43 days, and the young bird does not leave the nest for another 50 days or so.

I have only seen one puffin around Tramore. They sometimes get blown inland during Winter storms. I heard from my brother that there are loads of them in Newfoundland, Canada. Tourists go out to see them fly around on islands out at sea.They look very funny when they are trying to get into the air at sea. You will see some of them on the Saltee Islands, County Wexford.

The stamp was issued in Phase 1 on January 16th. 1997.

Written by--: Cliff English.

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Click on the stamp to listen to the bird sound